Graphic design is just one of those things I know I don’t have the skills to do. I mean, I don’t even do traditional art.
So, when I came across a platform called Designs.ai the other day that claimed it could help you design something in less than 2 minutes, it caught my eye.
Designs.ai was created to be a quick, easy-to-use tool for non-designers to create good content, and since I wanted to know more about how it worked, I approached the team.
Doing What They Know Best
Vulcan Post managed to reach out to Warren Leow, CEO of Designs.ai, for some answers about how the platform first came about.
It was conceptualised in early 2018 by Warren to be an integrated AI powered platform to make the creative process smarter, faster and easier for freelancers, startups and SMEs.
Their global operations span Malaysia, Poland, India, Pakistan, and Indonesia.
Altogether, they have a team of about 20, and it’s constantly growing.
Designs.ai is the third core product of its parent company Inmagine Group, which has been in the stock content industry for over 18 years and has 2 other core products: Pixlr and 123RF.
“Throughout this time, we have connected with hundreds of creatives, marketing departments, media giants, and have learnt a great deal about their pain points,” Warren shared.
Their large in-house design team also gave them a lot of insight into how they could further optimise the creative process.
For example, some of the problems faced today include a lack of inspiration, difficulty in policing branding guidelines, and an excessive amount of manual work. Using AI will help to make the work more efficient, and will greatly boost team productivity. Thus, from all the lessons and resources gained across the years, we created Designs.ai.Warren Leow, Designs.ai
No Skills Needed For These Tools
Currently, you’ll find 4 tools on the platform: Logomaker, Videomaker, Mockupmaker, and Designmaker.
The AI engine works differently per tool, according to Warren.
“For Logomaker, it is utilised to generate millions of variations from a user’s selected preferences and brand information. For Videomaker, AI is used to mine relevant keywords from an inputted script to find relevant images, videos, and audio clips,” he explained.
“Designmaker employs AI for auto-resizing designs and for auto-suggesting colour and font combinations. Lastly, Mockupmaker’s adoption of AI is for seamlessly editing images onto a user’s selected mockup template.”
Across all these tools then, you simply have to input your brand information and preferences, wait for the AI engine to generate your content, and then tweak them using Designs.ai’s simplified editor.
You can also utilise the platform’s integration feature for more efficiency. For example, you can use Logomaker to create a logo and transfer it onto a mockup using Mockupmaker.
The mockup can then be used on your Designmaker created poster and social graphics, and Videomaker edited videos.
Videomaker is currently the only tool available for use, and it comes in 3 packages: 1 project for US$33, 5 projects for US$19.80 each (or you can make a one-time payment of US$99), and 20 projects for US$16.50 each (or US$330 in a one-time payment).
On the other hand, interested users can expect to access Logomaker, Mockupmaker and Designmaker by the end of 2020’s first quarter.
“By then, Designs.ai will be a fully integrated suite with a simple subscription plan. It will have everything a small business needs for branding and marketing,” Warren said.
The team also plans to introduce a localised subscription plan in the future, so don’t let those dollar signs scare you away just yet.
Overcoming Old Challenges And Taking On New Ones
Of course, building a platform like this didn’t come without its challenges.
“In the initial phases, we were largely moving in uncharted territory for Designs.ai. Because of this, it was difficult to apply conventional frameworks and business models. For us, this meant we were free to experiment with different product strategies and be innovative,” Warren said.
But now their key challenge has changed. With the product maturing and gaining popularity, they’re focusing on finding more talent to join the team.
To do this, they’ve been regularly attending career fairs and events, and have even been leveraging Inmagine’s pool of employees for potential hires.
They’re also taking in interns and embracing the concept of remote work, as can be seen in their hiring of talents from across Asia and Europe.
Besides SMEs, Designs.ai foresees large firms finding the platform relevant in the coming years too.
“Right now, many of them are still relying on incumbent models like outsourcing content to agencies or hiring large inhouse design teams,” Warren explained.
“This leads to problems such as high overhead costs, miscommunication, and designs inconsistent with brand guidelines.”
For its large customers, Designs.ai plans to target agencies like the American Association of Advertising Agencies (4As) and WPP plc, enterprises such as Grab, Amazon, and AirAsia, and professional services firms such as McKinsey & Company and PricewaterhouseCoopers (PWC).
With such a convenient platform, it brings into question how Designs.ai will affect creative freelancers and agencies. But like everything else, the answer isn’t that AI will replace them.
AI is simply there make their existing work easier, by assisting in the stages of conceptualisation, strategy, and execution. This will enable them to take on more clients at a time too.
To some people, a platform like Designs.ai may seem like the easy and lazy way out of design. To others, it’s a godsend for optimising time and reducing manual work.
Personally, I fall within the latter group. If I had a business, I might give it a try since I won’t have to do much, but I’d still have control over (part of) the process and end result without having to interact with a single person.
- You can read more about what we’ve written on AI here.